Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Complete Confidence

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?...though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident. (Psalm 27:1,3)
What are you the most confident of?

The meaning of the word "confident" involves trust and reliance on someone or something. If you think about this definition in reverse, it cannot be "confidence" if there isn't some form of reliance. Reliance rests entirely on the performance and the strength of whatever that object is. In fact, one explanation of the word "rely" reads, "Rely is used when the person is needed to physically do something." ( Reliance depends on the actions of something else.

...and are confident that you yourself are a guide to the blind, a light to those who are in darkness, an instructor of the foolish, a teacher of babes, having the form of knowledge and truth in the law. (Romans 2:19-20)
Much is said today about being "self-confident". But self-confidence is opposite to God's instructions. Jesus informed us in order to follow Him, we must first "deny ourself". (Matthew 16:24) Romans 8:8 says, "They that are in the flesh cannot please God." Even stronger is the word given in James 3:16. "For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind." (NLT)

That doesn't sound too good to me!

Yet we are self-confident all the time. And in being that way, we deny God the right to "do" something in our life. Instead of depending on His actions on our behalf, we trust in ourselves. Remember those silly exercises where someone falls backward expecting someone else to catch them? Well, there is something to be said for that image. That is how we are to "be confident" in God.

I the LORD have spoken it, and I will do it. (Ezekiel 36:36)
Throwing away all confidence in yourself is a huge task. It means deliberately choosing to live your life dependent on God. Think about this. Every step you take for every day of your life, every decision, every choice, are entirely God's. No matter what your mind says to you, no matter what your body says, no matter how afraid you are, or how confident you are in your own abilities, your every choice is what your heavenly Father has asked of you.

The good news is He has said, "I will do it." That which He has promised, He is also able and more than that, willing to perform. (Psalm 27:4) Having confidence in God is like being backed by the ultimate supplier. Whatever I need, whenever I need it, He is there to provide it. He is always able, always loving, never weak, and never failing.

Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. (James 4:10)
This brings me to the opposite of self-confidence - humility. God has said if we will humble ourselves, if we'll throw away the pride we have in our own abilities, and become subservient to Him, if we'll allow Him to DO for us what He has promised to do, then we'll find success. Humility requires we take an action on our part. Colossians 3:12 instructs us to, "PUT ON...humbleness of mind." In other words, if we have to "put it on" then sometimes it is not "on" to start with.

Self-confidence is pride, but humility is trust. I live every day knowing that in myself I can do nothing. (John 5:30) I am entirely dependent on God coming in behind me and stepping out before me, and this gives me boldness. (Psalm 139:5) For I know that God is bigger and stronger than anything I'm ever facing. In Him I am completely confident.

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. (Philippians 1:6)
Suzanne Williams Photography
Florida, USA

Suzanne Williams is a native Floridian, wife, and mother, with a penchant for spelling anything, who happens to love photography.

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